Missed Opportunities In Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 3

Nebula looks at Star Lord in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 3

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 is the newest Marvel Cinematic Universe movie, and it’s one of the MCU’s best movies since 2019’s Avengers: Endgame. The latest Guardians movie had a lot of powerful emotions, fascinating fight scenes, and an intriguing new villain, all with a heartwarming conclusion to wrap things up.

RELATED: 10 Biggest Implications Of Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 3’s Ending

Overall, Vol. 3 did many things right as the final Guardians movie, and it took full advantage of its cool cast of sympathetic characters to create a gripping narrative. However, the movie missed some opportunities for Easter eggs, references, and character details that could’ve made it even better.



10 Nebula’s Amusing Culture Shocks

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Gamora’s foster sister Nebula played a major role in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, being a full-blown member of the team and a proper hero. Like Gamora, Nebula grew up as Thanos’ foster daughter and was only taught how to fight and kill, not how to integrate into civilian life.

This has led to some amusing culture shocks, such as Gamora thinking David Hasselhoff had a magic boat rather than a talking car, and Nebula getting confused by chopsticks with Chinese takeout. Guardians Vol. 3 could have done more with Nebula’s amusing culture shocks to reference her upbringing, but it didn’t.

9 Star-Lord’s Complete Costume With His Helmet

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>A close-of MCU Star-Lord wearing his helmet.

In the first two Guardians movies, the rogue hero Star-Lord had a cool helmet with circular red eyes and a polished steel finish, which allowed him to survive outer space. That helmet saved his and Gamora’s life in the first Guardians movie, but it was absent in Vol. 3.

This may have been disappointing for MCU and Marvel Comics fans, who are used to seeing Star-Lord in his iconic helmet. Vol. 3 could have shown Star-Lord in his full, comics-accurate costume with his outfit and helmet together, which would have been an even better send-off for the character.

8 Hinting At Groot’s True Intelligence

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Groot in The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special.

In the MCU, Groot is one of the most foolish characters who rarely says or does anything intelligent, much to Rocket and Star-Lord’s annoyance. However, in the original Marvel comics, Groot is well-educated and has a strong grasp on advanced sciences.

RELATED: 10 Things Fans Don’t Know About Groot

Guardians Vol. 3 could have at least hinted at Groot’s formidable intellect, partly to appease comics fans and partly to assure MCU fans that Groot isn’t just an oaf. It could have balanced his character better and intrigued movie-only fans, making them wonder if they’ve been underestimating him.

7 The Rocket-Groot Combat Combo

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Rocket and Groot fighting together in the MCU

In the first Guardians movie, Rocket Raccoon and Groot were already a combat-ready duo who were used to fighting together. Their signature move was for Rocket to either stand on Groot’s shoulder or be held in Groot’s hand, and they would spin around while shooting their enemies.

Rocket did something similar with Bucky Barnes in Infinity War during the battle for Wakanda because Groot was absent. In Guardians Vol. 3, Groot and Rocket could have used their combat combination one last time aboard the High Evolutionary’s ship, but they didn’t.

6 Star-Lord Could Have Tried Harder To Influence Gamora

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Star-Lord and Gamora standing close from Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2

Star-Lord missed Gamora in Vol. 3, and he felt conflicted and confused when she appeared again as a Ravager. Star-Lord tried in vain to convince this Gamora to resume their romantic relationship, which led to some serious drama.

RELATED: 10 Harsh Realities of Being In The Guardians Of The Galaxy

Star-Lord tried his best to win over Gamora’s heart all over again, but he could have done more. In the other MCU movies, he charmed and intrigued Gamora with pop culture references. He could have done the same in Vol. 3 with romantic stories or lyrics from his favorite TV shows, movies, and songs.

5 Adam Warlock & The Soul Stone

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Adam Warlock survives an explosion in Guardians of the Galaxy 3

The comics character Adam Warlock finally made his MCU debut in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 after a post-credits scene in Vol. 2 hinted at his arrival. Adam Warlock has a cool superhero costume and vast cosmic powers, but he’s missing something: the Soul Stone.

In the comics, Adam Warlock often had the Soul Stone. However, since the MCU has written out all six Infinity Stones, Adam didn’t have it. Still, Ayesha could have winked at comic fans by wistfully commenting that she had wanted to give Adam the Soul Stone, but that it’s impossible now.

4 Character Development For Starhawk

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Stakar Ogord in the MCU/GotG holding a gun while talking.

Stakar Ogord/Starhawk, played by Sylvester Stallone, had a minor role in Vol. 2 and an even smaller one in Vol. 3, robbing MCU fans of a good chance to deepen his character. Even if Starhawk didn’t intend to join the Guardians, his character was due for some development.

Instead, the films define Starhawk by his rivalry with Yondu and his change of heart about the latter in Vol. 2, and little more. Starhawk did show his happy, carefree side when Vol. 3 ended with a big dance scene, but that was too little, too late for this intriguing character.

3 Showing What The Collector Is Up To

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>The collector in the MCU

The mysterious Collector appeared in the first Guardians movie, and an illusionary version of him also appeared in Phase 3 as part of Thanos’ trick with the Reality Stone. The Collector was a cold antihero who often bought and sold trinkets or living people, and the Guardians sometimes had business with him.

RELATED: 10 Ways Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 3 Will Shape The MCU’s Future

The Collector didn’t properly appear in Vol. 3, though a former part of his collection, Howard the Duck, did appear. Vol. 3 missed an opportunity to show what the Collector is doing, either building up a new collection of items elsewhere or finding a new purpose in his life at last.

2 Other People Listening To Star-Lord’s Music

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Star-Lord's walkman in the MCU

Music is a big part of the Guardians movies. Star-Lord is always listening to classic rock and pop hits on his mobile music devices, mainly his Walkman and then his Zune player. Star-Lord is defensive of those things, since music is his main connection to planet Earth, though he once trusted Gamora with his Walkman.

In Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, Star-Lord was carrying around his new Zune and even risked his life for it, but he could have done more. It would have been more touching if Star-Lord shared his music with a friend, like his half-sister Mantis or even Nebula.

1 Flashbacks Of Peter Quill’s Earth Life

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Peter Quill in Guardians Of The Galaxy as Star-Lord frowning.

Star-Lord was born as Peter Quill on Earth, and at age 8, Yondu’s Ravager crew abducted him. Star-Lord only has a tenuous connection with his homeworld in the MCU, but when Vol. 3 ended, he visited Earth and even reunited his maternal grandfather.

Since Vol. 3 put emphasis on Star-Lord’s roots, the movie could have shown a few brief flashbacks to show the young Peter Quill in his brief pre-Ravager life. That would make the emotional impact of Peter’s abduction hit even harder and make it clear what exactly Peter left behind when Yondu captured him.

NEXT: 10 Strongest Guardians Of The Galaxy, Ranked


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